It’s amazing what a simple smile and kind gesture can do for a person. When I learned of the MSA’s plans to go from campus to campus (that means stepping beyond the doors of the Paul Robeson Cultural Center—OMG—I know), giving out goodie bags full of chocolate and messages of “Smile! It’s Charity,” my first thought was, “Wow, that’s so cool!”
My second thought was, “I’ll probably be really bad at this.”
Going up to people and interrupting them when I’m used to avoiding eye contact with my Rutgers peers on a normal day was quite a step. But the bright yellow shirt I had on and was surrounded by that read “The Muslim Family” served as a reminder. A reminder that all these other people storming the campuses with me were my brothers and sisters in Islam, spreading that same positive message for the same positive reasons. I was with my ummah.
From Douglass to Busch…
to Livingston to College Ave…
I felt like I was with a group of tourists who knew the campuses and the people on them all too well. They knew the students needed some warm smiles on a chilly day. Ask any person on the walk, and I’m sure they’ll tell you about an encounter that left not only the other person smiling, but the smile-spreader smiling too. Some feedback, courtesy of people who know what to do with a hashtag when they see one:
See what everyone else had to say by clicking here.
At the end of it all, the crew regrouped on College Ave for a barbecue in weather that’s probably not meant for a barbecue. Nevertheless, dedicated volunteers stood by the grill and the sandwich making table to ensure guests had some special dinner to eat. Food along with activities like arm wrestling and jousting made for a relaxing end to an exciting day.
Being one of the #MuslimsOfRutgers is a real blessing, Alhamdulillah. And the semester isn’t even over yet! ;)